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Hardtail help

BigRBigR Posts: 35
edited April 2008 in MTB buying advice
I have reached the stage of retiring my aged hardtail and am considering my options. I have at the moment narrowed it down to one of three. I am looking for a lightweight bike more for cross country riding rather than trail centres ( I am luck to have a FS for this). I also get a sore back and need a little give in the frame.
I am looking at 3 bikes all around £950 - either rock lobster tig(SL/853) at merlin or a giant XTC c2. I would be interested in any advice particularly if anyone has tried one of these frames. Other suggestions welcome if in budget. Unfortunately test riding any of the above is not a realistic option.




  • explosifpeteexplosifpete Posts: 1,327
    The giant XTC c2 as i'm sure you know is make of carbon and is very racey which is good for speed but not very good for a bad back.
    The rock lobster is a much more forgiving bike but won't be as fast or light.
    I would recomend building a bike up yourself around a steel or if your budget allows, a titanium frame as they take out some of the trail buzz and sharp knocks that you will get with a carbon or high end alloy frame.
    best of luck
  • rock lobster aluminium frames are both stiff however seem to have decent amount of flex also when required, mine (b52 no longer made) has the hydroformed rear end and is easton rad tubing so seems spot on, great bikes too. no experience of the steel frame or the giant i'm afraid.

    Rock lobsters always get consistantly high reviews however.
  • BlackSpurBlackSpur Posts: 4,228
    What about a geared on-One Inbred?
    "Melancholy is incompatible with bicycling." ~James E. Starrs
  • BigRBigR Posts: 35

    I had looked at on-ones but the frame appears a tad heavy and I can't get their bike builder to work, bits appear out of stock.

    I like the look (and price) of the merlin frames but am a little worried I may fall between sizes looking at the geometry compared to my old bike. What reviews I have found of the giant frame suggest the rear gives reasonable damping which is why I was interested to hear if anyone had tried one. I would love a titanium frame but with the build etc I don't think I could sneak it past the better half.

    Merlin still looks the favourite unless any other suggestions.
  • explosifpeteexplosifpete Posts: 1,327
    I ride a cove handjob and its really good. they sell it as a north sore hardcore xc bike but its just a steel xc frame really, nothing fancy.
    Others worth looking at are the kona explosif ... gn=froogle

    or the rocky mountain hammer

    The konas can be picked up quite cheap at the moment
  • icarusicarus Posts: 89
    I had the same choices to make recently and bought an Orange P7.
    It was a toss up between the Malt-4 and the P7.

    I wanted a steel frame to soften the ride up, I tried some aluminium framed bikes but found them a little harsh. I couldn't really put my finger on it but the Orange just felt a little softer and more plush, but with the same speed.
    Handles great too.

    The Malt-4 had a better spec, but I wanted the Orange frame.
    For £950 you could get an Orange prestige.
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